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In 1778, General George Washington was approached with an interesting proposal from Lt. Col. John Laurens of South Carolina. The war in the southern colonies was going badly, in part because of a shortage of troops. Laurens's solution was to raise a [...]
South Carolina planter and merchant, Henry Laurens was one of the richest men in colonial America. He amassed a fortune through buying and selling African slaves. Before the American Revolution, over 40% of Africans who survived transport to the [...]
In this letter, John Laurens asks his father, South Carolina slaveowner Henry Laurens, to give him several slaves in lieu of his inheritance, so that he can arm them to fight in the Continental army.
James Henry Gooding, an African-American soldier fighting on Morris Island, South Carolina, writes to President Lincoln asking for better pay. Initially, black soliders in the Union Army were paid only $10 a month, from which $3 was deducted for [...]
John F. Shorter, an African-American solider writing on behalf of his fellow members of the Massachusetts 55th Regiment, addresses President Lincoln over the issue of unfair pay. Shorter charges that he and his fellow soldiers have received no pay [...]
Although over a million African-American men and women served during World War II, they continued to experience discrimination in the armed forces. In addition to being relegated to segregated combat units, often in service-and-supply capacities, [...]